Read highlights from Day 1 here.
The action never really stops at SIHH. At any given moment, you could be missing out on the grand launch of a new product or in some cases, the arrival of a celebrity ambassador. Just yesterday, Benedict Cumberbatch visited the Jaeger-LeCoultre booth as its new ambassador, and as did Ryan Reynolds for Piaget. Today, Hugh Jackman made an appearance at Montblanc’s booth.
But the stars of the fair aren’t really the stars, of course. Here are the real ones.
Vacheron Constantin Fifty Six
The world’s oldest continued watchmaker (since 1755) is looking to prove that it doesn’t just create some of the world’s most exquisite dress watches and technical beauties; it can also create daily watches for a new generation of watch lovers. This effort was probably best seen in the Overseas collection recently but its latest launch, the Fifty Six is a new breed of Vacheron Constantin.
Taking design references from a model released in 1956, the brand is looking to invoke a past-inspired contemporary watch and one that’s priced lower (for a VC piece) for the new generation of up-and-comers that want a piece of horological history. The basic three-hand with date (shown above) is its new entry piece.
Hermès Carre H
While it may be the maison’s first year exhibiting at SIHH, Hermès is no stranger to the Swiss watch world. Celebrating its 40th anniversary of moving its watch business to Bien, Switzerland, the house announced “Play” as its theme for the year. We’ve come to expect nothing but the quirkiest of designs each year so it was surprising that this year’s Carre H from Hermès was a little subdued but still, a real looker.
Square is the name of the game and the Carre H takes on the shape with small quirky twists here and there such as the curved lugs and corners. It’s a watch that seems simple but with several elements in true Hermes style that makes it unique.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris Chronograph Worldtime
While Baselworld last year was filled with re-editions, it seems that this year’s SIHH has taken a little bit of a cue from it but in its own way. Jaeger-LeCoultre celebrates its own anniversary this year, the 185th anniversary since its manufacture was built to encompass all facets of watchmaking. If you’ve read anything about Jaeger-LeCoultre, you would know that for the longest time, it was considered the watchmaker’s watchmaker. It’s fitting then that its new campaign celebrates being “Made of Makers.”
Novelty-wise, the brand has relaunched its Polaris collection and the standout for us (besides are-edition of the Polaris Memovox) is the Chronograph Worldtime. There’s a lot going on on the watch’s dial but it’s hard to disagree that Jaeger-LeCoultre has pulled it off perfectly. Note the three different finishes on the dial that gives plenty of depth to the design.
Baume & Mercier Clifton Baumatic
With the backing of a large group like Richemont behind it, we’re happy to see that Baume & Mercier finally got to producing its own in-house movement, courtesy of ValFleurier, the group’s arm for movement development. It’s been in the works for a while and as the brand put it to us, it needed to take that much time to truly create what it wanted for the customer.
The result is something that’s quintessential Baume & Mercier. A movement that’s built with five days of power reserve, thanks to a silicon balance wheel and escapement, and boasting an accuracy of -4/+6 seconds a day for less than S$4,000? Amazing stuff, really. While the entire collection could very well be COSC-certified, the brand chose to only certify a small batch and has presented it as a variant to the range.
Roger Dubuis Excalibur Aventador S
There are many partnerships between watch brands and automobile makers but the one between Lamborghini and Roger Dubuis is one that’s a match made in heaven. Just look at any of the products from the two next to each other and you’re bound to agree. Avant-garde design, a penchant for pushing the limits, the signs have always been there. To celebrate the newly minted partnership, Roger Dubuis has released the Excalibur Aventador S, a futuristic (goes without saying for the brand) piece with dual escapements angled at 45 degrees on either side of a differential system, allowing for an increased precision.